There are tons of books and programs designed to teach you what, when and how much you should eat, guiding you step by step, calorie after calorie in the attempt to have you lose weight. But there’s one thing that they don’t teach you.
Do you know what that is?
How to deal with that extremely powerful force that pushes you, like in a state of trance, in front of your fridge or to the nearest takeaway. Most of the time your extra weight doesn’t depend on what you eat during your meals. If you carefully think about it, it’s very likely that those extra pounds are due to you eating more calories than needed during the day, as a way to run away from painful emotions you find very hard to cope with, like for example anger, sadness, boredom or loneliness.
SO the question is: ARE YOU FEEDING YOUR EMOTIONS OR YOUR BELLY?
What is it exactly that differentiates physical hunger from emotional hunger?
🧠PHYSICAL HUNGER is often felt in the stomach and in your belly, in the form of belly rumbling, a sense of shakiness, low energy or you might feel a strange sensation in your mouth.
😭EMOTIONAL HUNGER almost never manifest in a physical way. It doesn’t arise because our belly is empty and needs fuel to function but because we are looking for food to fill an emotional need.
All of us, in our lives experience some form of eating to reject frustrations or other unpleasant feelings. This becomes an issue though, when reaching out for food becomes the only or the most recurrent way we deal with our emotions or stressful situations in our lives.
Food ceases to be a simple way to sustain our body in all its daily energy needs, as it should be, becoming instead the elective way to distract ourselves from the problems and numb the pain we feel inside.
But the reality is that it’s only a short-term band aid. As soon as you finish your last bite that guilty feeling starts to sink in, the problem is still there and it creates such an emotional state that you want to reach out to even more food.
That’s the main reason why the strategies you might have tried in the past to ease the pain caused my excess weight and overeating didn’t work. They focus on the symptom, the extra calorie intake, instead of the cause, the emotions that cause you to eat more than your body needs.
If you overeat as a response to numb some painful emotions, YOU NEED TO START FROM WORKING ON THOSE EMOTIONS, and NOT from your food intake or the extra calories.
In my work, I like exploring this aspect of my client’s relationship with food, adding more mindfulness to their eating experience. Why? Because I find that many times working to add awareness to the emotional dimension it’s key to generate true and sustainable changes.
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Have a great mindful day!😊
PS: Ready to start working on your emotional eating? Book a discovery call today.
We’ll discuss the trigger situations and emotions that drag you to the fridge and we’ll make a plan to help you heal your relationship with food.